Archive for March, 2009

Teleprompter, Blue Eyeball Camera

Monday, March 30th, 2009

Use this website to scroll data.  Great for broadcasting text over video stream.

Teleprompter

Splitcam to share your video.  How to guide.

New video camera will go live on this website : Blue Eyeball Mic and 720p camera

Blue eyeball

A Pro Webcam with High-quality Audio Capture!
The Eyeball offers up Super HD video plus Blue-quality audio for an all-in-one webcam solution. Perfect for video conferencing, instant messaging, video blogging, and more, you get Blue’s excellent condenser microphone capsule alongside a premium lens. The Eyeball requires no drivers on a Mac or Windows, so you can just plug it in and go. It also features the same integrated stand and case design as Blue’s Snowflake USB mic in addition to a custom monitor adapter, so you can attache the Blue Eyeball to virtually any desktop monitor or laptop. 

Blue Eyeball Webcamera at a Glance:

  • Super HD quality video with premium audio capture
  • Driverless installation on Mac or Windows
  • Integrated stand and case plus a monitor adapter for positioning anywhere

Super HD quality video with premium audio capture
The Blue Eyeball provides exceptional Super HD video, making it an excellent choice for desktop video applications. What’s more, it features integrated audio capture with a high-quality condenser capsule. Whether you’re instant messaging, capturing a video blog, or recording a song for a YouTube video, the Blue Eyeball is an all-in-one solution!

Driverless installation on Mac or Windows
You can easily incorporate the Blue Eyeball into any computer setup – it needs no drivers to operate on Mac and PC computers.

Integrated stand and case plus a monitor adapter for positioning anywhere
While the Blue Eyeball boasts the same integrated stand and case design as Blue’s popular Snowflake USB microphone, it also includes a custom designed monitor adapter. Just put the Eyeball on your desktop or position it on your monitor – wherever works best.

Blue Eyeball Webcamera Features:

  • Blue condenser capsule for high-quality audio capture
  • Super HD video resolution
  • Camera hide option for privacy
  • Integrated stand and case
  • Driverless installation on Windows and Mac
  • Monitor adapter for optimal positioning
  • USB cable included

The Blue Eyeball is a complete audio/video capture solution for Mac and PC! 

Remote Desktop for Vista hack

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

This post will show you how to enable concurrent Remote Desktop Sessions in Vista, Vista Home, Vista Home Premium.  Do not do this with Vista ultimate, as it is already activated.

I found a software hack to enable remote desktop for vista. You can download it here

64bit version is here

Note:  You are taking a risk by following these directions.  This program will modify the registry and replace a dll file in the vista operating system.  You can render your computer un-usable or loose data if something goes wrong.  However, I have done this on a brand new computer it worked great.  Do this at your own risk.

Click on start, then type in CMD. Don’t hit enter. It will show up on the top of the start window. Right click CMD and choose run as administrator. From here, you can run the batch file. However, I have found that you need to stop the remote desktop service first. You may even need to disable it and reboot. This will allow the file to be replaced in the windows folder. As always, make a copy of the file being replaced, termserv.dll

If you have success, you should be able to use remote desktop. Remember to change the firewall to allow port 3389 both tcp and udp. Also, you should create a new account to use for remote desktop. You will notice that you can run this session and the console doesn’t get booted out. This simulates the RDP feature of server 2003, not the RDP feature of XP.

Auto Body Repair

Tuesday, March 24th, 2009

Vip Detailing 411 W Redlands Blvd Redlands, CA 92373

Vip Detailing Phone: (909) 798-1140

Make Money on the internet

Saturday, March 21st, 2009

Different ways to make money on the internet

  1. Run a program in the background on your pc.  Earn about $10/month – Porivo Peer.
  2. Sign up with PayPal to earn interest, and send and receive money online.
  3. Earn interst on a CD with ING Direct.  Highest return rates in the market.
  4. Buy and Sell items on EBAY
  5. Setup a website and put google ads on it. Start with WordPress Blog such as this site.

My research on loaning money to friends and or family

Monday, March 9th, 2009

It has happened.  I was asked to give a loan to a family member.  At that moment, many things have raced through my mind.  What if they couldn’t pay us back?  Could we afford to be without the money?  Could this be an investment oppertunity?  Could this be a way to help out a family member buy a house without causing any stress between us?  Then it hit me.  If I say no, I am a jerk, and if I say yes, then I should not ever expect to get paid back?  I felt like I was stuck between a rock and a hard place.  Now, it is just a matter of time before I have to make a decision.  So I decided to do some research, and this is what I have found: 

DISCLAIMER – This information came from doing google searches, and is in no way being portraid as being accurate.  It is submitted here to help shed some light on the subject.

Highlights of lending money to family members.
  1. Treat the loan as a business arrangement
  2. Put all terms of the loan in writing
  3. be forthcoming about any legal steps you will take to collect an upaid loan
  4. Divorce yourself from making judgements on the borrower’s spending decisions
  5. Consider requiring collateral for large loans
  6. Check on possible tax consequences
  7. Consider what will happen if you die before the load is paid back
  8. Set a fair interest rate.  If you don’t, the IRS will do it for you. (imputed interest)
  9. Setup formal payment arrangement
  10. Establish Solvency.  This proves you had a reasonable epectation of repayment, and were not actually making a gift. (tax reasons)
  11. Avoid Imputed Interest
  12. Demand a Demand loan. If not designated, the IRS will add up all the interest you would charge for the life of the loan and count it as a gift in the year you make the loan.
  13. Don’t confuse the word borrow with loan. Borrow means you will never get paid back.
  14. Do the loan correctly to minimize hurt relationships if re-payment of the loan is not possible.
  15. The contract should contain loan amount, loan period, payment period, interest rate and collateral.   This will be seen as a loan by the IRS and not a Gift.
  16. The interest rate must be at least the minimum rate set the the federal rate.  Short term < 3 years, mid-term 3-9 years, long term 9 + years. The AFR rates are: short) 1.36%, mid 2.85%, long 4.45% as of Dec 2008.  See IRS for current chart.
  17. Interest Income – 1040 schedule b must be filed yearly for the life of the loan.  Doing this will verify that your loan is not a gift in the eyes of the IRS.
  18. Collateral.  Have your name added to the purchase of the house.  This way if the loan goes into default, you can still be elegible to write the loan off as a loss.

Sample loan documents:

Tips on Lending Money to Family and Friends 
Treat the loan as a business arrangement. After all, you’ve now become the banker, and bankers take things seriously. Once you have agreed on the amount of the loan, discuss the interest rate, term, payment due date, and late fees. To figure out monthly payments, including interest, consider using a loan calculator, such as the one available at www.bankrate.com. 
Put all the terms of the loan in writing. Many Web sites offer free promissory note forms. One such site is Internet Legal Research Group at www.ilrg.com/forms/promisry.html, where you can find promissory note forms for each state. Consider having the documents notarized, as this will give you more legal standing if the borrower defaults. While putting it in writing is smart because it makes the borrower more accountable, be aware that it won’t guarantee you will be repaid. It’s simply another layer of protection. 
Be forthcoming about any legal steps you will take to collect an unpaid loan.Jointly reviewing a worst-case scenario in advance of the situation can go a long way to preserve a relationship if things start going south. 
Divorce yourself from making judgments on the borrower’s spending decisions. When someone owes you money, it’s difficult not to watch how they spend their money, particularly if they’re behind on payments to you. Fixating on their frivolous spending can drive a wedge between the two of you. Inquiring about their plans to get back on track with payments is justified, but resist the urge to grill them over where the money has gone
Consider requiring collateral for large loans. If you are lending money for a car, insist that you be listed as the lien holder on the title. If the loan is for the down-payment on a house, have the loan drawn up with you listed as the second mortgage holder. If the borrower defaults, any equity remaining after the primary lender is repaid will go toward paying off your loan. If you are going to require collateral, it is wise to have the loan handled by an attorney. 
Check on possible tax consequences. The IRS frowns on loans that charge little or no interest and may require you to pay a gift tax. Before loaning more than $10,000, talk to your tax accountant to ensure you are protected. If the borrower defaults on the loan, document your attempts at collection so you can write-off the loan. 
Consider what will happen if you die before the loan is paid back. In your agreement, include a statement covering such circumstances. Will the loan be forgiven, or will it still be owed to the estate? Do the same repayment terms remain in place? If it is owed to the estate and the borrower is an adult child, will the amount be subtracted from your child’s share of the inheritance?


In reality, most of us are fairly generous people, and we want to help a family member or friend with a loan when we can. The other 

reality is that a person who can’t borrow money from a traditional source (especially in today’s easy credit environment) often has damaged credit or no credit, both of which make such a borrower a greater credit risk.

For the record, I believe that lending money to friends and family is far preferable to cosigning a loan for someone who can’t qualify on his or her own. Cosigning creates a false sense of security. You think the primary borrower is responsible for the loan, and that you as a cosigner are not. In fact, when you cosign, you are on the hook for the entire loan. Even if it is paid on time, your credit score will be affected by the loan if it is reported to the credit bureaus.

Warnings aside, there are times when you may be asked to loan money to someone you know for any number of reasons. These can include:

  • Capital to start or grow a small business;
  • A down payment or loan so your child or relative can purchase a home;
  • Money to help someone get back on his or her feet after a divorce, illness, or other catastrophe;
  • Helping a younger person or immigrant establishing credit for the first time.

If you are going to lend money to someone you know, you might as well increase your chances for success. Here’s how:

1. Set a fair interest rate. This can work in your favor, as well as the borrower’s. The interest rate you charge can still be competitive with the rate your borrower can get from a traditional lender, but high enough that you make more money than you would if you parked your money in a safer bank account. If your borrower balks at being charged interest, you might want to blame it on the IRS. That’s because if you give person more than $12,000 in a year, it will likely be treated as a gift and subject to gift tax. To avoid this potential complication on a larger loan, you must charge an interest rate that is at least as high as the IRS’ Applicable Federal Rate, which is set monthly.

2. Get your agreement in writing. If you think it is “uncomfortable” to insist on a written loan agreement, think about how uncomfortable you will be trying to collect if your borrower falls behind. If you have to, blame it on your spouse, accountant, or someone else who “insists you get it in writing.” You can find a sample promissory note online or in a legal forms book, or if the amount is large enough, you can ask an attorney to draft it for you. Spell out the terms, including how much is being borrowed, the interest rate, late payments and when they will be assessed, and how/where payments will be made.

3. Set up a formal payment arrangement. Let’s face it: it will be easier for your borrower to make a late payment to you than to his or her other creditors. And I doubt you want to become a debt collector. So include in your agreement the details of when payments are due, late fees that will be charged, and how you want payments to be made (by check or PayPal, for example). I don’t recommend you accept cash. I do recommend that you set up a copy of any checks or money orders in a file in case there is a disagreement about payments that were made later. Go a step further to arrange automatic deductions from the borrower’s bank account to yours, and you won’t have to worry about whether the check is in the mail.

Ask the Experts: For years, CircleLending.com has been facilitating person-to-person loans. At a minimum, if you are approached to loan money to someone you know, or if you are thinking about asking for a loan, you will want to get CircleLending.com’s free guides which will spell out all the details of how to make these types of loans work. If you are a borrower, requesting a loan from someone you know can be a whole lot easier if you use this service. CircleLending can help with the paperwork and with setting up automatic payments each month. It can also facilitate larger loans such as mortgages and make sure the paperwork is correct and your loan is legally recorded with the property.



http://www.improvingyourworld.com/finances/the_right_way_to_loan_money_to_family_002342.html


A lot of times someone in your family might run into financial trouble, or need a loan for something big. Loaning money to your family is something many people look at as taboo, and the reason is that many times family members will take what was intended to be a loan and turn it into a gift. This simply does not have to be the case. Loaning money to family can be safe, but here’s how to ensure that your loan stays a loan — not a gift:

Start by being very upfront with the person. If they ask for money, your first response needs to be “I will only give it to you if you pay me back!” This way they know that is a condition. Clearly indicating that you expect to be paid back is the first thing you have to do, but not the only.

Along with making the expectation of repayment clean, you need to set the expectation of when you expect repayment to begin. You should take time to sit down with the person and specify when you expect them to start paying you back, how often you expect payments, and in what amount. This puts a clear picture in the borrowers head of what you expect from them, and what they need to live up to if they are going to borrow from you. 
Next, take the time to discuss how you would like to handle late or missed payments. You are family, so you will understand when they get sick and miss work, and so money is tight. But, you need to have clear guidelines for these circumstances before they occur. So decide what happens, and stick to it. Also, discuss if your borrower has anything to put up as collateral in case they do not pay you back.
Seek tax advice. Unless you legally gift the money to them, and work out some sort of payback agreement that is under the table, you are going to get in trouble with the IRS. Obviously gifts are gifts, and you can’t ask for repayment. However, if you lend the money and do not collect interest, you can get in trouble with the IRS. Get the advice of a tax professional regarding how much interest you should charge to avoid a sticky wicket called “imputed interest.” Basically, the IRS defines a loan as a transaction that involves interest — so even if you don’t collect it, the IRS will assume a “reasonable rate” and then hold you accountable for paying taxes on it. This means that loaning someone money without interest can cost you money. 
Get it in writing. While no one wants to take family to court, the last thing you want is to be stuck down the line in the midst of a “he said, she said” argument. A contract signed by both parties (and preferably witnessed) is a great way to ensure that the lending terms are clear, and give you a legal foot to stand on if you aren’t getting repaid. So, spell it all out, and get it notarized if need be.
If you are worried about a personal loan, make it less personal by adding a third party to make it more formal. You can hire a third-party service such as Virgin Money to add the proper degree of formality to a personal loan. This protects your money, and it can even help the borrowers credit because some of these companies will report their payments to the credit reporting agencies.
Know when to say no. It can be awkward to say no, but lending isn’t a responsibility you have just because you are family. If you simply don’t have the means to offer assistance, or can’t afford not to get the money back, or even if it is simply that lending will cause you undue anxiety, then say, “I can’t.”

 

http://www.smsmallbiz.com/Seven_Safe_Ways_to_Loan_Money_to_Your_Family.html

Seven Safe Ways to Loan Money to Your Family

 

July 13, 2007

ALMOST EVERYONE has a relative who’s perennially short of cash. Or perhaps a child or grandchild who at one time or another need a loan. Sure, you can be generous. But before you write that check, be sure to follow these rules. Loans to family members touch on two areas about which the IRS is especially sensitive: gifts and interest income. 

Document the Loan

The first step to avoiding trouble is to clearly document that the money is actually a loan, with or without interest. The documentation should also include payment terms and the collateral for the loan, if any. Handle these wrong, and you could find yourself paying income taxes on money you never received and gift taxes on money you never gave away. In the long term, the loan could cut into your gift tax exemption ($1 million) and your estate tax exemption ($2 million for 2006-2008).

You don’t need a lawyer to draw up the documentation. In fact, you can easily satisfy the IRS with a do-it-yourself document-creation software program.

Secure the Note

One of the most common loans among family members is to a child who’s buying a house. In this case, you should take the extra step of legally securing the note with the residence. (This generally does require a lawyer.) Otherwise, the borrower can’t take advantage of one of the most popular tax deductions: interest on a home mortgage. Anyone thinking of not reporting a loan should consider this point. Not only could you get in trouble if you are audited, but your child could face criminal charges if he or she falsifies a mortgage application to hide the origin of the loan money.

Establish Solvency

You should also write a memo to yourself establishing that the borrower was solvent at the time of the loan. This proves you had a reasonable expectation of repayment and were not actually making a gift.

Set an Interest Rate

Interest-free doesn’t mean hassle-free. Many loans among family members are interest-free. But be careful. If you don’t set an interest rate, the IRS, in its family-friendly way, will do it for you. And since that interest would be considered income for the lender, the IRS will happily tax you on the interest payments you never received. You have now entered the hideously complex world of “imputed interest.” Essentially, the IRS, eager to raise revenue, has decided that for a loan to be a loan, interest must be paid, and if interest is being paid, someone is making taxable income.

The IRS’s enthusiasm does not stop there. Not only does the agency tax you on imaginary income, but it assumes that the borrower could not afford to make the interest payments (he had to borrow money, didn’t he?) and then acts as though you gave him the money to pay the interest. Enter the gift tax. So the money you never received but are paying taxes on anyway could also count against your $12,000 annual tax-free gift limit, and if you exceed that, your $1 million lifetime gift tax exemption and $2 million estate tax exemption. This is not all as nasty as it sounds, and in most cases bad results can be avoided with good planning. 

Avoid Imputed Interest

First, imputed interest and all the crazy imputed income and gift tax problems generally do not apply when loans from you to the borrower total no more than $10,000. However, watch out for this: The $10,000 limit applies to all outstanding loans from you to the borrower, including those charging interest. But if the $10,000 rule does not help, you can turn to the $100,000 rule.

The $100,000 rule applies when the aggregate balance of all outstanding loans (interest-free or otherwise) between you and the borrower is $100,000 or less. For income tax purposes, the amount of imputed interest is zero if the borrower’s net investment income for the year is no more than $1,000. (Net investment income, which includes interest, short-term capital gains, and certain royalties, but not long-term capital gains, is the figure used to determine how much margin-account interest can be deducted on Schedule A.) Since most people who borrow money from family members are probably not sitting on large investment portfolios, imputed interest can generally be avoided.

Under the $100,000 rule, when the borrower’s net investment income exceeds $1,000, imputed interest is limited to the actual amount of investment income. Here is an example: If a mother lends her daughter $100,000 interest-free but the IRS sets an interest rate of 5%, then the mother would have to declare imputed interest payments of $5,000. But if the daughter’s investment income is less than $1,000, the imputed interest would be zero. If the daughter earned $1,500 in interest income, the mother would have to pay taxes on $1,500 rather than $5,000.

To qualify for the $100,000 rule, the lender (you) must receive an annual statement that discloses the borrower’s net investment income.

Demand a Demand Loan

Sa far, so good. Unfortunately, the $100,000 rule gets really tricky when it comes to the gift tax. The net investment income rule does not apply here. To minimize gift tax problems, you should designate your interest-free advance as a “demand loan.” This means you can demand full repayment anytime you want. While this may seem unduly threatening to your relative, it could save you money because of the way the IRS calculates the imputed gift. You and the borrower can still informally agree on a repayment schedule.

With a demand loan, the amount of the imputed gift is calculated on a yearly basis. Interest payments on all but the biggest loans will total less than $12,000 a year, so the imputed gift for each year the loan is outstanding will fall harmlessly below the $12,000 annual limit for tax-free gifts.

But if you do not designate the loan a demand loan, the IRS will add up all the interest you would charge for the life of the loan and count it as a gift in the year you make the loan. The result could be a relatively large imputed gift that exceeds the $12,000 annual tax-free limit, and also cuts into your $1 million lifetime gift tax exemption and your $2 million estate tax exemption.

These rules can get tricky, though, so it is probably a good idea to consult a tax pro before making this kind of loan. The IRS will let you avoid all these hassles if you simply charge interest on the loan. The IRS uses what it calls applicable federal rates, which change monthly, to determine if the interest rate is proper. If the lender charges at least the applicable federal rates, he simply reports the interest payments as taxable income. You can find those rates on the IRS web site

When Uncle Lou Becomes a Deadbeat

There are few things that hurt family relations more than bad debts. But the IRS is not ashamed to get involved. In fact, in some cases, it can make life easier for the lender.

First, if Uncle Lou turns out to be a deadbeat, you want to be able to claim a “nonbusiness bad-debt deduction.” This is treated as a short-term capital loss on your Schedule D. You can claim the deduction simply by showing that the loan is uncollectible. You don’t have to file a lawsuit or hire a collection agency. However, you should make a written demand for repayment (again, Broderbund’s Family Lawyer supplies a format). When that action goes unrewarded, write yourself another memo for the tax file documenting that you tried and failed to collect your money, and preferably include financial information showing the borrower is insolvent. At this point, if revenge is on your mind, look no further than the IRS. A bad-debt write-off costs the IRS money, and the agency does not give up revenue that easily. For each loss, it reasons, someone, somewhere had a gain, and in this case it would be Uncle Lou. The IRS then seeks to collect tax on his income from “debt forgiveness.” So while you may be out a few thousand dollars, you can rest assured that the IRS is seeking to extract at least a few ounces of flesh on your behalf.

But what if you haven’t been keeping good records and a loan you made goes bad? Can you still get that consolation prize of a big write-off? Quite possibly. A 1995 U.S. Tax Court case illustrates the bare minimum required for a write-off. Here, a father made thousands of dollars in undocumented loans to his 23-year-old daughter, who wanted to open a roller-skating rink.

The skating rink eventually failed, and the father claimed a $35,000 nonbusiness bad-debt deduction, even though no formal collection efforts were undertaken against his daughter. (She had filed for bankruptcy four months earlier.) The Tax Court concluded that the advances were loans because of “loan” notations the father had made on some of the checks, and because he had previously made undocumented loans to family members and friends and had been repaid.

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/258010/when_you_loan_money_to_family_.html

When You Loan Money to Family

Imagine that a family member comes to you with a sad story regarding finances, and they need a loan for a car payment, a house payment, to cover a phone bill, or for something they’ve always wanted. A deep sense of obligation, kindness, and the love of family prompts you to pull out your checkbook and write a check to cover the cost. After all, you’re family, and family members should be trusted to fulfill a loan given to other family members. You expect to get the money back since they asked if they could borrow the money, but the word borrow, and the wordloan, might not have the meaning you thought it did. 


Many people carelessly use the word borrow when asking for items or a loan they know they’ll never pay back, and giving a loan to relatives is sometimes the beginning of the end of relationships. Sometimes family members feel they can get away with not paying back a loan to other family members, because no matter what, family is always family, but this assumption couldn’t be further from the truth. Sadly, families have been ripped apart at the seams because of unpaid loans, and when you loan money to family, you must be prepared in advance for the chance that you won’t get that money back. 

The generous act of providing a loan to family members, friends, or others who are down on their luck, just might make you realize that people are not always who they appear to be, especially if they don’t always pay back debts. Brothers, sisters, kids, and even parents can end up conveniently overlooking a loan, and the following true story is an account of my husband’s experience of loaning money to his brother. 


http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/how-to-properly-loan-money-to-family-friends.html

How To Properly Loan Money to Family, Friends

 It might seem tacky and could possibly offend someone that is asking to borrow money if you ask them for some sort of collateral if you do loan them money. If they have intentions of paying you back, they should understand this and not be offended. A legal contract of some sort could also be signed by the borrower. This might seem a little drastic, but that will depend on how much you will be affected if you do not get your money back.

http://www.filife.com/stories/lending-money-to-your-uncle

Lending Money to Your Uncle

 

Tips on Lending Money to Family and Friends 
Treat the loan as a business arrangement. After all, you’ve now become the banker, and bankers take things seriously. Once you have agreed on the amount of the loan, discuss the interest rate, term, payment due date, and late fees. To figure out monthly payments, including interest, consider using a loan calculator, such as the one available at www.bankrate.com. 
Put all the terms of the loan in writing. Many Web sites offer free promissory note forms. One such site is Internet Legal Research Group at www.ilrg.com/forms/promisry.html, where you can find promissory note forms for each state. Consider having the documents notarized, as this will give you more legal standing if the borrower defaults. While putting it in writing is smart because it makes the borrower more accountable, be aware that it won’t guarantee you will be repaid. It’s simply another layer of protection. 
Be forthcoming about any legal steps you will take to collect an unpaid loan.Jointly reviewing a worst-case scenario in advance of the situation can go a long way to preserve a relationship if things start going south. 
Divorce yourself from making judgments on the borrower’s spending decisions. When someone owes you money, it’s difficult not to watch how they spend their money, particularly if they’re behind on payments to you. Fixating on their frivolous spending can drive a wedge between the two of you. Inquiring about their plans to get back on track with payments is justified, but resist the urge to grill them over where the money has gone
Consider requiring collateral for large loans. If you are lending money for a car, insist that you be listed as the lien holder on the title. If the loan is for the down-payment on a house, have the loan drawn up with you listed as the second mortgage holder. If the borrower defaults, any equity remaining after the primary lender is repaid will go toward paying off your loan. If you are going to require collateral, it is wise to have the loan handled by an attorney. 
Check on possible tax consequences. The IRS frowns on loans that charge little or no interest and may require you to pay a gift tax. Before loaning more than $10,000, talk to your tax accountant to ensure you are protected. If the borrower defaults on the loan, document your attempts at collection so you can write-off the loan. 
Consider what will happen if you die before the loan is paid back. In your agreement, include a statement covering such circumstances. Will the loan be forgiven, or will it still be owed to the estate? Do the same repayment terms remain in place? If it is owed to the estate and the borrower is an adult child, will the amount be subtracted from your child’s share of the inheritance?


In reality, most of us are fairly generous people, and we want to help a family member or friend with a loan when we can. The other 

reality is that a person who can’t borrow money from a traditional source (especially in today’s easy credit environment) often has damaged credit or no credit, both of which make such a borrower a greater credit risk.

For the record, I believe that lending money to friends and family is far preferable to cosigning a loan for someone who can’t qualify on his or her own. Cosigning creates a false sense of security. You think the primary borrower is responsible for the loan, and that you as a cosigner are not. In fact, when you cosign, you are on the hook for the entire loan. Even if it is paid on time, your credit score will be affected by the loan if it is reported to the credit bureaus.

Warnings aside, there are times when you may be asked to loan money to someone you know for any number of reasons. These can include:

  • Capital to start or grow a small business;
  • A down payment or loan so your child or relative can purchase a home;
  • Money to help someone get back on his or her feet after a divorce, illness, or other catastrophe;
  • Helping a younger person or immigrant establishing credit for the first time.

If you are going to lend money to someone you know, you might as well increase your chances for success. Here’s how:

1. Set a fair interest rate. This can work in your favor, as well as the borrower’s. The interest rate you charge can still be competitive with the rate your borrower can get from a traditional lender, but high enough that you make more money than you would if you parked your money in a safer bank account. If your borrower balks at being charged interest, you might want to blame it on the IRS. That’s because if you give person more than $12,000 in a year, it will likely be treated as a gift and subject to gift tax. To avoid this potential complication on a larger loan, you must charge an interest rate that is at least as high as the IRS’ Applicable Federal Rate, which is set monthly.

2. Get your agreement in writing. If you think it is “uncomfortable” to insist on a written loan agreement, think about how uncomfortable you will be trying to collect if your borrower falls behind. If you have to, blame it on your spouse, accountant, or someone else who “insists you get it in writing.” You can find a sample promissory note online or in a legal forms book, or if the amount is large enough, you can ask an attorney to draft it for you. Spell out the terms, including how much is being borrowed, the interest rate, late payments and when they will be assessed, and how/where payments will be made.

3. Set up a formal payment arrangement. Let’s face it: it will be easier for your borrower to make a late payment to you than to his or her other creditors. And I doubt you want to become a debt collector. So include in your agreement the details of when payments are due, late fees that will be charged, and how you want payments to be made (by check or PayPal, for example). I don’t recommend you accept cash. I do recommend that you set up a copy of any checks or money orders in a file in case there is a disagreement about payments that were made later. Go a step further to arrange automatic deductions from the borrower’s bank account to yours, and you won’t have to worry about whether the check is in the mail.

Ask the Experts: For years, CircleLending.com has been facilitating person-to-person loans. At a minimum, if you are approached to loan money to someone you know, or if you are thinking about asking for a loan, you will want to get CircleLending.com’s free guides which will spell out all the details of how to make these types of loans work. If you are a borrower, requesting a loan from someone you know can be a whole lot easier if you use this service. CircleLending can help with the paperwork and with setting up automatic payments each month. It can also facilitate larger loans such as mortgages and make sure the paperwork is correct and your loan is legally recorded with the property.



http://www.improvingyourworld.com/finances/the_right_way_to_loan_money_to_family_002342.html

A lot of times someone in your family might run into financial trouble, or need a loan for something big. Loaning money to your family is something many people look at as taboo, and the reason is that many times family members will take what was intended to be a loan and turn it into a gift. This simply does not have to be the case. Loaning money to family can be safe, but here’s how to ensure that your loan stays a loan — not a gift:

Start by being very upfront with the person. If they ask for money, your first response needs to be “I will only give it to you if you pay me back!” This way they know that is a condition. Clearly indicating that you expect to be paid back is the first thing you have to do, but not the only.

Along with making the expectation of repayment clean, you need to set the expectation of when you expect repayment to begin. You should take time to sit down with the person and specify when you expect them to start paying you back, how often you expect payments, and in what amount. This puts a clear picture in the borrowers head of what you expect from them, and what they need to live up to if they are going to borrow from you. 
Next, take the time to discuss how you would like to handle late or missed payments. You are family, so you will understand when they get sick and miss work, and so money is tight. But, you need to have clear guidelines for these circumstances before they occur. So decide what happens, and stick to it. Also, discuss if your borrower has anything to put up as collateral in case they do not pay you back.
Seek tax advice. Unless you legally gift the money to them, and work out some sort of payback agreement that is under the table, you are going to get in trouble with the IRS. Obviously gifts are gifts, and you can’t ask for repayment. However, if you lend the money and do not collect interest, you can get in trouble with the IRS. Get the advice of a tax professional regarding how much interest you should charge to avoid a sticky wicket called “imputed interest.” Basically, the IRS defines a loan as a transaction that involves interest — so even if you don’t collect it, the IRS will assume a “reasonable rate” and then hold you accountable for paying taxes on it. This means that loaning someone money without interest can cost you money. 
Get it in writing. While no one wants to take family to court, the last thing you want is to be stuck down the line in the midst of a “he said, she said” argument. A contract signed by both parties (and preferably witnessed) is a great way to ensure that the lending terms are clear, and give you a legal foot to stand on if you aren’t getting repaid. So, spell it all out, and get it notarized if need be.
If you are worried about a personal loan, make it less personal by adding a third party to make it more formal. You can hire a third-party service such as Virgin Money to add the proper degree of formality to a personal loan. This protects your money, and it can even help the borrowers credit because some of these companies will report their payments to the credit reporting agencies.
Know when to say no. It can be awkward to say no, but lending isn’t a responsibility you have just because you are family. If you simply don’t have the means to offer assistance, or can’t afford not to get the money back, or even if it is simply that lending will cause you undue anxiety, then say, “I can’t.”

 

http://www.smsmallbiz.com/Seven_Safe_Ways_to_Loan_Money_to_Your_Family.html

Seven Safe Ways to Loan Money to Your Family

July 13, 2007

ALMOST EVERYONE has a relative who’s perennially short of cash. Or perhaps a child or grandchild who at one time or another need a loan. Sure, you can be generous. But before you write that check, be sure to follow these rules. Loans to family members touch on two areas about which the IRS is especially sensitive: gifts and interest income. 

Document the Loan

The first step to avoiding trouble is to clearly document that the money is actually a loan, with or without interest. The documentation should also include payment terms and the collateral for the loan, if any. Handle these wrong, and you could find yourself paying income taxes on money you never received and gift taxes on money you never gave away. In the long term, the loan could cut into your gift tax exemption ($1 million) and your estate tax exemption ($2 million for 2006-2008).

You don’t need a lawyer to draw up the documentation. In fact, you can easily satisfy the IRS with a do-it-yourself document-creation software program.

Secure the Note

One of the most common loans among family members is to a child who’s buying a house. In this case, you should take the extra step of legally securing the note with the residence. (This generally does require a lawyer.) Otherwise, the borrower can’t take advantage of one of the most popular tax deductions: interest on a home mortgage. Anyone thinking of not reporting a loan should consider this point. Not only could you get in trouble if you are audited, but your child could face criminal charges if he or she falsifies a mortgage application to hide the origin of the loan money.

Establish Solvency

You should also write a memo to yourself establishing that the borrower was solvent at the time of the loan. This proves you had a reasonable expectation of repayment and were not actually making a gift.

Set an Interest Rate

Interest-free doesn’t mean hassle-free. Many loans among family members are interest-free. But be careful. If you don’t set an interest rate, the IRS, in its family-friendly way, will do it for you. And since that interest would be considered income for the lender, the IRS will happily tax you on the interest payments you never received. You have now entered the hideously complex world of “imputed interest.” Essentially, the IRS, eager to raise revenue, has decided that for a loan to be a loan, interest must be paid, and if interest is being paid, someone is making taxable income.

The IRS’s enthusiasm does not stop there. Not only does the agency tax you on imaginary income, but it assumes that the borrower could not afford to make the interest payments (he had to borrow money, didn’t he?) and then acts as though you gave him the money to pay the interest. Enter the gift tax. So the money you never received but are paying taxes on anyway could also count against your $12,000 annual tax-free gift limit, and if you exceed that, your $1 million lifetime gift tax exemption and $2 million estate tax exemption. This is not all as nasty as it sounds, and in most cases bad results can be avoided with good planning. 

Avoid Imputed Interest

First, imputed interest and all the crazy imputed income and gift tax problems generally do not apply when loans from you to the borrower total no more than $10,000. However, watch out for this: The $10,000 limit applies to all outstanding loans from you to the borrower, including those charging interest. But if the $10,000 rule does not help, you can turn to the $100,000 rule.

The $100,000 rule applies when the aggregate balance of all outstanding loans (interest-free or otherwise) between you and the borrower is $100,000 or less. For income tax purposes, the amount of imputed interest is zero if the borrower’s net investment income for the year is no more than $1,000. (Net investment income, which includes interest, short-term capital gains, and certain royalties, but not long-term capital gains, is the figure used to determine how much margin-account interest can be deducted on Schedule A.) Since most people who borrow money from family members are probably not sitting on large investment portfolios, imputed interest can generally be avoided.

Under the $100,000 rule, when the borrower’s net investment income exceeds $1,000, imputed interest is limited to the actual amount of investment income. Here is an example: If a mother lends her daughter $100,000 interest-free but the IRS sets an interest rate of 5%, then the mother would have to declare imputed interest payments of $5,000. But if the daughter’s investment income is less than $1,000, the imputed interest would be zero. If the daughter earned $1,500 in interest income, the mother would have to pay taxes on $1,500 rather than $5,000.

To qualify for the $100,000 rule, the lender (you) must receive an annual statement that discloses the borrower’s net investment income.

Demand a Demand Loan

Sa far, so good. Unfortunately, the $100,000 rule gets really tricky when it comes to the gift tax. The net investment income rule does not apply here. To minimize gift tax problems, you should designate your interest-free advance as a “demand loan.” This means you can demand full repayment anytime you want. While this may seem unduly threatening to your relative, it could save you money because of the way the IRS calculates the imputed gift. You and the borrower can still informally agree on a repayment schedule.

With a demand loan, the amount of the imputed gift is calculated on a yearly basis. Interest payments on all but the biggest loans will total less than $12,000 a year, so the imputed gift for each year the loan is outstanding will fall harmlessly below the $12,000 annual limit for tax-free gifts.

But if you do not designate the loan a demand loan, the IRS will add up all the interest you would charge for the life of the loan and count it as a gift in the year you make the loan. The result could be a relatively large imputed gift that exceeds the $12,000 annual tax-free limit, and also cuts into your $1 million lifetime gift tax exemption and your $2 million estate tax exemption.

These rules can get tricky, though, so it is probably a good idea to consult a tax pro before making this kind of loan. The IRS will let you avoid all these hassles if you simply charge interest on the loan. The IRS uses what it calls applicable federal rates, which change monthly, to determine if the interest rate is proper. If the lender charges at least the applicable federal rates, he simply reports the interest payments as taxable income. You can find those rates on the IRS web site

When Uncle Lou Becomes a Deadbeat

There are few things that hurt family relations more than bad debts. But the IRS is not ashamed to get involved. In fact, in some cases, it can make life easier for the lender.

First, if Uncle Lou turns out to be a deadbeat, you want to be able to claim a “nonbusiness bad-debt deduction.” This is treated as a short-term capital loss on your Schedule D. You can claim the deduction simply by showing that the loan is uncollectible. You don’t have to file a lawsuit or hire a collection agency. However, you should make a written demand for repayment (again, Broderbund’s Family Lawyer supplies a format). When that action goes unrewarded, write yourself another memo for the tax file documenting that you tried and failed to collect your money, and preferably include financial information showing the borrower is insolvent. At this point, if revenge is on your mind, look no further than the IRS. A bad-debt write-off costs the IRS money, and the agency does not give up revenue that easily. For each loss, it reasons, someone, somewhere had a gain, and in this case it would be Uncle Lou. The IRS then seeks to collect tax on his income from “debt forgiveness.” So while you may be out a few thousand dollars, you can rest assured that the IRS is seeking to extract at least a few ounces of flesh on your behalf.

But what if you haven’t been keeping good records and a loan you made goes bad? Can you still get that consolation prize of a big write-off? Quite possibly. A 1995 U.S. Tax Court case illustrates the bare minimum required for a write-off. Here, a father made thousands of dollars in undocumented loans to his 23-year-old daughter, who wanted to open a roller-skating rink.

The skating rink eventually failed, and the father claimed a $35,000 nonbusiness bad-debt deduction, even though no formal collection efforts were undertaken against his daughter. (She had filed for bankruptcy four months earlier.) The Tax Court concluded that the advances were loans because of “loan” notations the father had made on some of the checks, and because he had previously made undocumented loans to family members and friends and had been repaid.

http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/258010/when_you_loan_money_to_family_.html

When You Loan Money to Family

Imagine that a family member comes to you with a sad story regarding finances, and they need a loan for a car payment, a house payment, to cover a phone bill, or for something they’ve always wanted. A deep sense of obligation, kindness, and the love of family prompts you to pull out your checkbook and write a check to cover the cost. After all, you’re family, and family members should be trusted to fulfill a loan given to other family members. You expect to get the money back since they asked if they could borrow the money, but the word borrow, and the wordloan, might not have the meaning you thought it did. 


Many people carelessly use the word borrow when asking for items or a loan they know they’ll never pay back, and giving a loan to relatives is sometimes the beginning of the end of relationships. Sometimes family members feel they can get away with not paying back a loan to other family members, because no matter what, family is always family, but this assumption couldn’t be further from the truth. Sadly, families have been ripped apart at the seams because of unpaid loans, and when you loan money to family, you must be prepared in advance for the chance that you won’t get that money back. 

The generous act of providing a loan to family members, friends, or others who are down on their luck, just might make you realize that people are not always who they appear to be, especially if they don’t always pay back debts. Brothers, sisters, kids, and even parents can end up conveniently overlooking a loan, and the following true story is an account of my husband’s experience of loaning money to his brother. 


http://www.bargaineering.com/articles/how-to-properly-loan-money-to-family-friends.html

How To Properly Loan Money to Family, Friends



It might seem tacky and could possibly offend someone that is asking to borrow money if you ask them for some sort of collateral if you do loan them money. If they have intentions of paying you back, they should understand this and not be offended. A legal contract of some sort could also be signed by the borrower. This might seem a little drastic, but that will depend on how much you will be affected if you do not get your money back.

http://www.filife.com/stories/lending-money-to-your-uncle

Lending Money to Your Uncle

 

 





Sample loan document:

CONSUMER LOAN AGREEMENT

1. Parties:  The undersigned is ______________________, the Borrower, and the Lender is _______________________________________.

2. Date of Agreement:  ________________________________________________.

3. Promise to Pay:  Within _____ months from today, Borrower promises to pay to Lender_________________________ dollars ($_______) and interest and other charges stated below.

4. Responsibility:  Although this agreement may be signed below by more than one person, each of the undersigned understand that they are each as individuals responsible and jointly and severally liable for paying back the full amount.

5. Breakdown of Loan:  Borrower will pay:
    Amount of Loan:   $__________
    Other (Describe)   $__________
    Amount financed:  $__________

    Finance charge:     $__________
    Total of payments: $__________

ANNUAL PERCENTAGE RATE________________%

6. Repayment:  Borrower will repay in the following manner: Borrower will repay the amount of this note in _____equal uninterrupted monthly installments of $____________ each on the _____ day of each month starting on the _____day of _______, 20____, and ending on _________, 20____.

7. Prepayment:  Borrower has the right to prepay the whole outstanding amount at any time. If Borrower pays early, or if this loan is refinanced or replaced by a new note, Lender will refund the unearned finance charge, figured by the Rule of 78-a commonly used formula for figuring rebates on installment loans.

8. Late Charge:  Any installment not paid within ten (10) days of its due date shall be subject to a late charge of 5% of the payment, not to exceed $____________ for any such late installment.

9. Security:  To protect Lender, Borrower gives what is known as a security interest or mortgage in: [Describe:] ___________________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________________
___________________________________________________________________________

10. Default:  If for any reason Borrower fails to make any payment on time, Borrower shall be in default. The Lender can then demand immediate payment of the entire remaining unpaid balance of this loan, without giving anyone further notice. If Borrower has not paid the full amount of the loan when the final payment is due, the Lender will charge Borrower interest on the unpaid balance at ______ percent ( %) per year.

11. Right of Offset:  If this loan becomes past due, the Lender will have the right to pay this loan from any deposit or security Borrower has with this lender without notice to him/her. 
If the Lender gives Borrower an extension of time to pay this loan, he/she still must repay the entire loan.

12. Collection fees:  If this note is placed with an attorney for collection, then Borrower agrees to pay an attorney’s fee of fifteen percent (15%) of the unpaid balance. This fee will be added to the unpaid balance of the loan.

13. Co-borrowers:  Any Co-borrowers signing this agreement agree to be equally responsible with the borrower for this loan.

Agreed To:
 


______________________________
Lender

 
______________________________ 
Borrower                                              

______________________________
Borrower


Fun Flash Apps

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009


WordPress Themes

Wednesday, March 4th, 2009

I was wanting a new look for the blog, so I searched for a WordPress theme editor.  I found Artisteer,artisteer an application for making Themes.  I know about all of the pre-made themes that you can choose from on WordPress’s website.  I just could find exactly what I wanted, but it was a good place to get ideas.  I wanted a way to get a visual on how it would look before I made it public.  I then found a plug-in that allows you to test drive your themes. 

When adding photos to themes, I found that Gif files work best with transparent backgrounds.  When you use the transparent backgrounds, it blends into the theme that you have chosen.  A great program for doing this is the Adobe Photoshop Elements app.  I am currently in the search of a similar  application that is free.  Another great feature is using textures and gradients.

Free online tool- Gradient Image Maker

Here is a website for generating gradients.  
Here is a website for generating textures. This gives you a great professional and unique looking website.

Here are a few of the themes I have made, and a couple of the ones that have come close to what I wanted from WordPress.

THEMES:

Kull Tech Aqua 3 Column
Kull Tech Light Blue 3 Column
Kull Tech Red v2 3 Column

Amazing Grace

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